It is so sad that one has to keep on talking of GMB and things around him in a weekly chat of this type that RIPPLES is, time and again. But these days there is nothing as engaging as the actions and inactions of GMB, our President.
So, do bear with me yet again this morning as I overlook the successful PDP Convention (don’t mind the ruling party propaganda). The PDP convention last Saturday elected a new chairman, Uche Secondus, a key executive of the same PDP before it went gaga after losing to GMB and APC at the 2015 general elections. We will duly RIPPLE on PDP after the convention on the whys and wheretofores of the event on who won and lost, with 2019 in view. Who knows, maybe a reawakened PDP might be the wake-up call to get APC back on track.
Now, on GMB, again this week, it is the video shots of his tour of Kano from clips shown of Kano Government House entrance that caught my attention and gave reason to this Friday morning RIPPLES.
The clips indicate an exceptionally “orderly” and cheering “tumultuous” crowd. Neat, with hardly any of the traditional rowdiness of GMB events in Kano. From Kano Airport to Emir’s Palace, it took only a little more than 20 minutes drive. GMB’s last trip from Government House to Emir’s Palace in early 2015 took nearly three hours.
That was when he came in to ask for votes for himself and all APC candidates under the usual GMB SAK bandwagon slogan we introduced in Kano ANPP in 2003. We initiated the SAK to ensure GMB got all the votes we could muster. The SAK bandwagon will be unlikely in 2019, especially now that it is clear no matter the manipulations of those who want to use and as usual dump him later, GMB is still likely to have his Kano votes. Or at least a significant portion of what he’d always gotten despite the mishandling of the mandate in Kano.
GMB’s Kano voters are now obviously more sophisticated than in those heady days of 2003 and a lot more since the 2015 elections too. In addition there are more media hosues now, as FM radio stations alone are 15 and counting. The booming social media content also has more impact than public officers and politicians will ever realise, before the poll results in 2019.
The attitude of our lawmakers and most of our governors has further woken the voter. The common voter is now acutely aware of the danger of bandwagons without quality checks on candidates. The two days of GMB’s Kano State Visit, after two-and-a-half-years since the elections, was a well-choreographed event.
As GMB was a guest of the Kano State Governor he did exactly what the governor wanted. After all it was a visit that many never expected, knowing GMB doesn’t usual show face where his “supporters” are divided. Coming in for Ganduje he had to sit through numerous monologues on his sterling qualities of integrity and all that to coax him to praise our Kano APC Government. As a dutiful guest he murmured platitudes of politeness.
Acutely aware of what is on ground he however refused to endorse any SAK bandwagon again despite the lobbying (and “tumasanci”) from “Honorable” Whip Doguwa who revealed he’d never won an election as easily as 2015 on the GMB APC SAK bandwagon.
Doguwa said in five elections this is the first time he’d not been taken to court over a win. Despite being on that SAK bandwagon though he was all along working extra time then with GMB opponents in the APC, Kwankwaso/Ganduje’s team before the primaries and right through to take off of the 8th National Assembly. He was to find his way into the “winning team” well after his team had lost in the National Assembly smartly working to clinch the prestigious Chief Whip’s post.
While in Kano, Mr. President sat through all the “tumultous” crowd under reference at Africa House to be told State Governor Ganduje is sole APC candidate for 2019 and that he had also been endorsed as sole candidate. As if he had ever needed that from that team!
The target was obviously to tell him “scratch our back, we scratch yours, or else..” He was told the two “sole candidates” decision by the spokesperson of those corraled as political stakeholders in APC. The spokesperson cleverly meant to tell GMB that he doesn’t need anybody else in the party, as if the general elections take place only within the party, with party executives and government functionaries alone as voters — the same functionaries who organised such a “tumultous crowd” that took Kano’s beloved GMB only 26 minutes from Kano Airport to the Emir’s Palace. GMB tours to Kano used to bring the city and environs to a total stand still for the whole day.
During the state visit for endorsement of Ganduje and co., no matter what else may be the political realities, GMB commissioned two of Governor Shekarau’s projects, both of them hospitals. And Shekarau is the Basher-in-Chief of General Buhari. With a look at the crises in GMB’s core states that give him the most votes, Kano, Kaduna, Katsina, Bauchi and Jigawa it’d be foolhardy to expect a freee ride to victory on the SAK bandwagon.
To compound the case for SAK, just look to the National Assembly top SAK beneficiary as confirmed by Hon. Doguwa. Voters won’t forget in a hurry the iniquitous handling of our GMB APC Government’s mandate by those we elected and the many others selected by those we elected. We won’t ever forget budget padding exposed by a lawmaker suspended by his mates for whistleblowing before it became a money-making venture.
Voters also won’t ever forget the dance of the madman by our slippery Senate, its President and his many friends in the Senate who, in brazen defiance of public opinion, escorted him to all his Code of Conduct Tribunal (CCB) trials.
And all of them are beneficiaries of the GMB bandwagon. They are politicians; voters know who have mortally hurt GMB and his mission.
To round off the “tumultuous”, “orderly” crowds or whatever, engaged howsoever to welcome GMB, I am glad the General is clearly in good health, Alhamdulillah. “Sai dai, ku ci kan ku ‘yan uwan mayu..”, as Dauda Kahuta Rarara put it so poetically well. And no one will fool or SAK bandwagon us, Common Voters anymore.